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Fangs fold for storage: western diamondback rattlesnake


Western Diamondback Rattlesnake / Rainer Alten.. / LicenseGFDL - Gnu Free Document License

The curving fangs of a western diamondback rattlesnake are stored when not in use by folding against the roof of the mouth via hinges.

"A western diamondback rattlesnake strikes at an intruder. The snake's jaws are specially hinged to allow it to open them extremely wide. This is necessary because the fangs curve inwards and need to be plunged vertically into the prey. When not in use they are folded back against the roof of the mouth (see diagram). The snake's windpipe is protruding at the bottom of its mouth -- this is so that the snake can still breathe after it has a mouthful of prey." (Foy and Oxford Scientific Films 1982:149)
About the inspiring organism
Med_crotalus_atrox_portrait_070731.jpg Western Diamond-backed Rattlesnake
Crotalus atrox BAIRD & GIRARD 1853
Common name: Texas-klapperschlange

Habitat(s): Desert, Forest, Grassland, Rocky Areas, Savanna, Shrubland
Learn more at
Some organism data provided by: TIGR Reptile Database
Organism/taxonomy data provided by:
Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life: 2008 Annual Checklist

Threat Categories LONG_LC IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern

Bioinspired products and application ideas

Application Ideas: Packaging designs for sharp or curved objects that reduce material use, simple storage designs to protect kids from sharp objects, multi-functional designs for cutting machinery.

Industrial Sector(s) interested in this strategy: Packaging, storing, manufacturing

Foy S; Oxford Scientific Films. 1982. The Grand Design: Form and Colour in Animals. Lingfield, Surrey, U.K.: BLA Publishing Limited for J.M.Dent & Sons Ltd, Aldine House, London. 238 p.
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